During pregnancy as we get bigger and bigger often we see an increase in sedentism (sitting) lack of movement which is absolutely counter-intuitive. As women about to go into labour movement and mobility specifically of the spine, pelvis and hips is paramount for a relaxed, easier delivery. One of the best preparations for labour and delivery an expectant mother can do is keep her hips, spine and low back mobile. Below are some gentle exercises to perform throughout your pregnancy to maintain and keep mobile.
Ensure you speak to you midwife/doctor before starting any exercise routine in pregnancy and if you have any prenatal contraindications – do not start a routine without advice from your midwife of OB to ensure it is safe for you.
1. Global Spine Movement (CARs) – gentle standing mobility for your low back to keep it moving and a good range of motion.
2. Single Leg Hip Mobility (CARs) – standing or in quadruped position. This is fab for maintaining that all important hip mobility that is needed for labour and delivery as well as reducing the strain the hip flexors put on the low back. As you get bigger you can move to the quadruped position due to balance.
3. Spine Segmenting (easy spinal motion) – using a squash ball to get your low back an spine moving and keep the movement in the lower back as the weight of the baby gets bigger and bigger.
4. Squatting – full squatting will not only help keep your hips, spine, knees and ankles mobile but practicing this position will also help during labour and delivery to aid in gravitational help that can occur. If your comfortable in this position, it’s a great one for during labour.